A few hours ago Nine Inch Nails, the main artistic project of Trent Reznor, released a new album titled “Ghosts I-IV” under a Creative Commons license (source) that allows non-commercial copying and derivative works. A part of the album is available as a free download on nin.com and the band has themselves distributed the package (which needless to say is free from unholy restrictions crap) to various bittorrent sites.
To show my appreciation for this demonstration of non-suck behavior, I immediately paid $5 on the site (Paypal and major credit/debit cards accepted) to gain access to a full quality copy of the album in the lossless FLAC audio compression format. The download store’s servers were initially overloaded, but my shipment of Surprise-NIN (Buying music without first reading reviews is not my usual behaviour) has now arrived after a bumpy ride.
I bought Radiohead’s “In Rainbows” online last October and I liked the album, but the sound quality of the 160 kbps or so CBR mp3 files was a disappointment. The FLAC aspect of this NIN release reveals that Reznor, who previously released files to make remixing easy, really understands what’s going on. This is the way music should be promoted and sold!
Update: As the album is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike license, I’ve made it available from my public file repository. I’ve included the original FLAC audio files and high quality variable bit rate mp3’s encoded with with Rarewares.org‘s LAME 3.97 (using
-V0 --vbr-new). The album can be bought in different formats starting from $5 on ghosts.nin.com.